Tag Archives: france

New Portrait underway

Paper Lace

Paper Lace

Here is a quick preview of the latest portrait I am working on.  It has incorporated my newest fascination (such a kinder word than obsession) with paper cut art.

I have cut out some of this paper lace which I will probably use over the portrait.  Really enjoyed doing this and it was an extension from cutting out my grevillea.

Backgound

Backgound

 

The person I am doing the portrait of is a lovely friend who has a fantastic style, I see her pattern as a beautiful, french baroque in clear, pastel colours, I am channeling the divine palette that was used in the movie Marie Antoinette.  Then I will use the lovely lace overlay in dark grey, to give further style and mystery to the work.

As you can see I have only started to add the colour to the background, it is being done in oil pastels this time, for something different.  I hope to make it a little soft on the edges rather than my usual crisp style, it is fun to break out the pastels again and they give a certain lushness to the work which is rather baroque.

I still longingly look at my lino cutting tools, but the wrist is still giving me trouble so I must keep away from them until I can get it sorted.

Karen

 

A Question of Style

Hydrangea 2

Hydrangea 2

I have been pondering on what my style is and what is style and how important is it.

It has been a very busy few weeks, but so interesting.  I have been joining in the fun of my class with the Journalling Girls at Mermaid Circus which has been a lot of fun.  There have been loads of inspirational videos to download for this on-line course and a Facebook group where the members of the group have been posting examples of their work.  The Melbourne members of the group even got together to have a catch up in person and some art supply shopping.

While journalling is not something that I  usually do, (though I did have my journal for my trip to France last year.  Big sigh, to think I was in Sancerre this time last year) I have found this course really fascinating and insightful in other ways.

Sancerre
Sancerre

One of the best things from the course is when Jane Davenport and Teesha Moore, both spoke about style, and how you create your own style.  When I was doing art in high school and uni in the early eighties my lecturers where always on us to create meaningful art and develop a style.  While many of my fellow students had robust political ideas which influenced their art, I did not and began to feel that my art was not serious or worthy because of it and it really stifled me in what I did.  I also wanted to try lots of different kinds of art work and medium and felt because I varied it so much that I could not develop a style of work.  Although I worked my way through these issues they were still in the back of mind.

Hannah

Both Jane and Teesha tell their students don’t worry about style, you naturally have a style and it will always come out, especially when you let go and just create.  How you make marks, the colour that you choose and the mediums that you use are all part of your style and you cannot but have a style when making these decisions.  Such a simple insight was so liberating for me, I knew that I had developed a style, but still the old ghosts hang around from the past to haunt you, but this one I have now let go and I feel freer in my art practice which can only be good.

So you never know what you are going to learn about when you do a course, but you always learn something and it just may not be what you thought.  Of course when I go back through my different art work that I have posted to this blog, maybe it is more than one style, and that is also ok.

Karen

My Relief Printing course has started and I will share some of the work I am doing in that next week.

2013 to begin, 2012 to remember

Happy New Year to all the lovely readers of this blog.

Melbourne FireworksHerald Sun Website

Melbourne Fireworks
Herald Sun Website

This is the fireworks in Melbourne last night, I had the privileged position of being on the top of one of the south bank apartments in town, 28 floors up.  We were right in the midst of all these fireworks, an absolutely spell binding view.  We were literally on the roof which was a little scary, but worth it for the show.

2012

My favourite paintings 2012

2012 was such a great year for me, I have restarted my art, which is so exciting in itself and this blog and the generous support of my readers, the comments, likes and views have been wonderful.  When I started I did not know if any one would see it and now I have over 70 followers.  It has kept me going, even when my energy levels have been low and I do not post as often as I would like, this blog and its supporters have made me get back on track so thank you. I still battle with Chronic Fatigue and sometimes I  do not have the energy to draw, paint or write.

I also had my wonderful trip to France which I shared with you, and again because of the blog I was committed to keeping a journal of the trip and it has been so fantastic on many levels.  I did some lovely, quick, loose drawings of the scenes that caught my eye, I have the best keep sake of the trip, I was able to share it with not only my friends and family, but with so many of you out there.  It enriched the whole trip so much more than I had thought.

2013

I am excited for what 2013 could bring, I have a few things on my agenda for next year.  They include

  • Starting to exhibit my work, this is my major artistic goal, though I am not sure how to go about it,
  •  I will start an Etsy Store and see what that brings.
  • I am going to do some relief printing classes, so look out for some prints.
  • Just be grateful to be able to continue to create and share the results and the journey with you.
  • I might even finally figure out Facebook and get my work out on it.

As always I have a great many plans, we will see how the year and the energy goes, but I am hopeful and content with how things are improving.  So thank you for your support and my family who give unstintingly in their support and understanding of me.

Karen x

 

Picture Revisted for Christmas

Looking down on Sancerre

Looking down on Sancerre

Grace one of the lovely people I met on my trip to France earlier in the year asked me to paint a picture from my journal for her Mum (who I also met) for Christmas.  What an honour and what a lovely gift idea.

I wanted to do Looking down on Sancerre, as it was taken from a photo that Grace took after I had left.  I have never re-painted a picture before and I was nervous about it.  But I finally took the plunge and thought this would be a good occasion to use some of the paper I found in my oh so favourite French Art Shop Sennelier.  (Yes it has been sitting in the paper portfolio, waiting for a special occasion to be used, mostly it just get taken out, admired, petted and put back as being too special to use).

After much nervous waiting, thinking the picture had been lost in the post somewhere between Australia and Florida, when I got a lovely email from Tomi with a photo of my picture framed and hanging on her wall.  I can’t tell you how happy that made me, to see one of my paintings hanging on a friends wall so far away.  That bit of paper had travelled so far from its origins in Thailand, to France then to Australia and finally to America, it should get frequent flyer points.

Here is the original painting, I think I have captured its freshness, while giving it a little bit of polish.

Sancerre

Sancerre

 

 

 

Karen

My Latest Love (in Art Materials)

Sennelier Inks

Sennelier Inks

Santa was very clever this year (well really my brother and sister-in-law took the none to subtle hint) and I received a bunch of lovely Sennelier Inks for Christmas this year.  Oh bliss and many bright, shiny, colourful things.  Actually it was an Artistic Christmas with my sister, niece and nephew giving me many A1 Plastic sleeves to protect my completed art work. (not sure if they are dog proof.  See August Post)

It is ironic that when I visited Sennelier Art Store in Paris in May (See Paris Art Shop May), I did not know about their inks.  It was not until I did a drawing class in November that I found out about these fabulous inks.  They are a traditional shellac based ink with a transparent satin finish, with colours that just glow.  They blend and dilute beautifully and when put on neat they even have a slight shine to them.

Sennelier Inks

Sennelier Inks

I am thinking of using them for the backgrounds for the pencil drawings as well as with black ink outlines.  So much opportunity, don’t you just love new art materials, they are such an inspiration.

Karen

Wisteria

Wisteria

Here is another street scene from Sancerre.  I just loved the tiny, narrow streets and the lovely stone houses with the shuttered windows.  It was the first time that I had seen shutters being used in a functional way.  Most shutters I have seen have been purely decoration and never moved.  I also loved the window boxes and pots that decorated the outside of these dwellings.  Our conditions are too harsh in Australia for window boxes to grow so well.  Out summers are too hot and the plants just get baked in the heat and are never as lush and abundant as these were, even in spring.

When I walked past this wisteria vine outside one of the wineries, I was fascinated by how it looped and twined around itself, with just a few flowers left and the leaves starting to sprout.

I have one more drawing to go.  I am trying to choose the photos and mementos that will fill up the rest of the journal and it will be done.  I am so excited about it, I have never had such a great reminder of a trip before.

Karen

Looking Down on Sancerre

Sancerre

This is a view from a tower in Sancerre down onto the town and out to the vineyards below and beyond.  Now I have cheated with this painting.  This is from a photo Grace and Tomi took from the tower at Sancerre.  (Thanks Grace for sharing this) I never got to the top of the tower so I am so happy to be able see the view through their eyes.

I love the way that you look down onto the houses and you get to see the shapes of the roofs.  These are not the straight roofs we get at home, but slightly wobbly, higgledy-piggledy roofs, cramped together roofs that have a much more organic feel.  These contrast nicely with the smoother fields beyond and the vault of sky above.

I feel I captured the roofs well and the fields beyond, but somehow I have lost the feel of the town being much higher than the fields below, I will need to ponder what is missing or if anyone could give me a clue I would be grateful.  I sure have pushed my boundaries on perspective work on this trip.

Karen